Whether you’re talking about coffee, wine, beer, or just organic vegetables and fruits, South Africans (and the world) want to consume products that are small-batch produced under a meticulous eye and ethos – otherwise known as artisanal products. This being said – is Cape Town gearing up to be the next Craft Cannabis Capital of the world?
While it isn’t legal to sell marijuana across the counter, you can enjoy it in your home, according to the Cannabis For Private Purposes Bill.
But we know that there are those working some magic in the background. Before we start, let’s make sure we’re on the same page about craft cannabis.
What is Craft Cannabis?
As you can vaguely make out from the combination of the words, it’s cannabis, and it’s craft. but what does it mean?
Craft Cannabis is distinguished by a number of factors.
Attention to detail:
With any product that is deemed crafted, it is a small-batch production. Like in the beer industry, where production is limited to a certain amount, and the owners are usually able to oversee all the steps. Also, they are normally able to guarantee more flavour.
These are all true for cannabis. You’ll know this to be accurate if you’ve grown and cured your own bud. This attention to detail also means that your end product is bound to be a higher quality item. Sure, the first few batches might not be great, but after some experience, it’ll be great!
What else defines craft?
When production is smaller and more hands on, it often becomes more sustainable due to the simple fact you’re able to adjust processes to make it more environmentally friendly.
This is true for cannabis growing. Where, if it was industrialised, you’d need to have a municipal supply of water. Smaller providers can switch to pH neutral rainwater. Which also helps with not having to adjust pH levels of municipal water.
In Cape Town, most serious cannabis enthusiasts already rely on mountain spring water. Growers like @DassieGrows use spring water and check their pH levels.
“You know what I’m saying? *Clicks*” – Grant of Dassie Grows.
And because he’s a rad oke, providing us with the epic picture above, we’re going to throw him a shoutout about his competition – #SoloCupChallenge or #DassieCup2021. We’d highly recommend following it on Instagram.
But we feel like the man himself can tell you more about the competition!
Anyway! What else can make cannabis a craft product?
According to Business Insider, it is estimated that more than 900,000 small-scale farmers in the Eastern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, and other provinces have been cultivating marijuana for a number of years, already.
It’s this huge volume of farmers that has the department of agriculture wanting to relax restrictions. As the value of the cannabis industry in South Africa by 2023 is estimated to be R27 billion.
By simply legalising the production for these small, craft cannabis providers, we could uplift many communities around the country, and distribute it via new channels into the urban hubs of South Africa.
And we all know from first hand experience, that the Eastern Cape and KwaZulu-Natal are perfect for growing world class organic landrace produce. The type of stuff that cannabis fans would travel for from across the globe.
If you need proof, a Lesotho-based cannabis cultivator and manufacturer has already gained access to the European market. Yes, this writer is biased and likes to link Business Insider as they do good work.
Now, we can argue about this, but honestly, there is no destination more prepared to welcome these craft cannabis fans and producers than Cape Town.
Cape Town the craft cannabis capital of the world
There have been some teething issues with cultivating in the Western Cape, case in point, the situation with our dear friends at The Haze Club. They will be presenting their case at the Cape High Court on 14 June 2021.
We suggest supporting them. But this being said, WESGRO has been fairly vocal about investing in their medical cannabis operations. Then again, this will be a large scale operation and not a craft setup. Also, not sure how their medical setup is going to help subsistence farmers? You can read into the statement.
Cape Town has embraced everything organic, bespoke, and artisanal. When the Oranjezicht City Farm Market offers cannabis growing workshops (which they are), you know that people in the Mother City are preparing themselves.
If you must do a workshop, use our buddies over at Cheeba Africa.
And to be frank, when it becomes legal… you know who’ll be stocking the best craft cannabis in Cape Town.
Words by: Andrew Macfarlane, writer, gardener, and just can’t believe it’s not legal yet…
z00tly says: “When them legal sales start my tree is going to be one smoky haze of joy!”